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L2’s latest study on Beauty brands in France finds that different categories should have different approaches to search visibility.  As of now, e-tailers lead in paid and organic search; they account for 40% of organic search results and 75% of paid search results, whereas brands control 35% and 23% of organic results respectively. This suggests brands should increase their investments in search to become more visible. A few takeaways from study the search positions of various Beauty categories in the U.K.

Colour Cosmetics: YouTube is king in colour cosmetics in search. YouTube properties appear in 66% of searches for colour cosmetics terms on Google.fr, a higher percentage than MarieClaire.fr and Elle.fr mentions. This suggests that investing in YouTube has longitudinal returns beyond the platform and in search.

Skincare: French skincare shoppers seek and encounter educational information, which falls in the three categories of skincare brand domains, e-tailer domains and content sites. About a fifth of the most visible e-tailer sites appearing for skincare category searches are online pharmacies, and nearly a quarter of the most visible content sites are health-related. French skincare brands – like Vichy – take this into account when developing content-rich sites. Like in Colour Cosmetics, Yves Rocher and Sephora are strong players in organic visibility while Amazon pushes its visibility with ad spend.

This category is dominated even more by e-tailers, both official and unofficial distributers, in paid and organic search. On average, e-tailers appear in three times as many first pages in organic search and twice as many in paid search for fragrance terms relative to brand sites. Price comparison sites – e.g. prixmoinscher.com, meilleurvendeur.com – are also aggressively investing and gaining visibility in search. Most of this is due to fragrance brands’ lack of SEO strategy, to the point that almost all are invisible in searches for relevant terms. As a result, all visibility is a result of paid investments. Content is not a main driver of visibility for this category, accounting for just 7% of brand search terms.

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